Players from the women’s first team visit children in hospitals and care homes in Barcelona

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Keira Walsh, Vicky López, Jonatan Giráldez i Aitana Bonmatí a l'Hospital Sant Joan de Déu amb un dels infants hospitalitzats.

The women’s team, at the forefront of this charitable activity organised every year by the FC Barcelona Foundation during the Christmas-holiday period

Players from the FC Barcelona women’s first team have visited a number of different children’s hospitals in the Barcelona area and, just like last year, they also paid a visit to several children’s care homes run by the Generalitat of Catalonia. This charitable activity is arranged by the FC Barcelona Foundation every year during the Christmas holidays, as part of their Emotional Wellbeing program. The chance to see, meet and speak to Azulgrana players first-hand was an extraordinary emotional and joyful experience for children and young people going through such a difficult time in their lives during this Christmas period.

The Barça delegation, headed by vice-president of the Club’s Institutional Area, Elena Fort, and vice-president of its Economic Area, Eduard Romeu, as well as members of the Foundation’s board of directors and trustees, split up into groups and set off in coaches from the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper, to travel to the various hospitals and children’s care homes. 

Lucy Bronze i Ona Batlle al Servei de Primera Emergència Kirikú

During the visits, the players shared exciting and unforgettable moments with all the children involved, signing autographs, taking selfies and bringing gifts, spreading smiles, hope and joy along the way in an excellent boost to the children’s spirits, some of whom are battling serious illnesses. These visits were carried out within the framework of the ‘Navidad todo el año’ (Christmas All Year Round) support initiative that is part of the FC Barcelona Foundation’s Emotional Wellbeing program. Aware of the impact that FC Barcelona and its players can have when it comes to positive emotional experiences for unwell children during their time in hospital, the Foundation arranges periodic visits to paediatric hospitals around Barcelona.

Children’s care homes

As was the case in early 2023, this year the women’s first-team players also visited children’s care homes under the auspices of the Generalitat of Catalonia’s General Management for Care of Children and Adolescents (DGAIA). These centres offer temporary residence for minors between 0 and 18 years of age in at-risk social situations (children’s shelters) and for children and young people moved away from their families due to their educational needs not being covered (Residential Educational Action Centres (CRAE).

A big fuss was made of the players’ arrival at the centres, with happiness and excitement in abundance. During the meetings, the residents were able to meet the Azulgrana footballers, receive supportive messages, have photos taken together and be presented with gifts. For the players too, getting to know these groups of vulnerable children at close quarters was a unique and very enriching experience.

The following centres were visited:

-Hospital Sant Joan de Déu / Aitana Bonmatí, Keira Walsh, Esmee Brugts, Vicky López i Jonathan Giráldez.
-Hospital Vall d’Hebron / Marta Torrejón, Caroline Graham, Irene Paredes, Asisat Oshoala i Martina Fernández.
-Hospital de Sant Pau / Patricia Guijarro, Clàudia Pina i Lucía Corrales.
-Hospital Trias i Pujol / Mariona Caldentey, Sandra Paños, Gemma Font i Giulia Dragoni.
-Hospital HM Nens / Fridolina Rolfo i Bruna Vilamala.
-Kirikú / Lucy Bronze i Ona Batlle.
-Centre d’Acollida Kairós/ Ingrid Engen i Jana Fernández.
-CRAE Collserola/ Catalina Coll i Salma Pallaruelo.

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